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Australia Urged to Tighten Gambling Laws

31 August 2005

AUSTRALIA – As reported by the Australia Age: "The Bracks Government is being urged to tighten gambling laws after complaints gamblers have obtained credit at gaming venues by using overdrafts on their home loans and cash advances on department store credit cards.

"Gambling reform advocates yesterday told The Age the Victorian Commission for Gambling Regulation had been aware of the practice for months but had failed to get the laws strengthened or penalise venue operators.

"Obtaining cash through credit cards at gaming venues was banned in Victoria in 2002. But gambling reform advocates say the definition of credit is too narrow if people are still able to use their overdrafts and department store hire-purchase cards to withdraw cash at gaming venues. Withdrawals from saving accounts are limited to $200 per transaction in gaming venues.

"Manager of Gamblers Help northern network, Julie Nelson, said some problem gamblers had used their overdrafts to obtain cash at gaming venues.

"…Two complaints regarding the accessing of credit at gaming venues have been made to the regulator…"

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